I agree that it's technically not ASCII art because it doesn't consist only of the ASCII character set. It's an extended character set. What it is, is character-based graphics.
Extended-ASCII art. It is the same as the old, old DOS games that made use of the smiley face, lines segments, etc.... to get "sprites". So, the Aquarius has basically the same graphics and sound functionality as the 1981 CGA PC in text mode (which gave 16 color characters). the only difference is the Aquarius extended-ASCII characters were designed for games; PC was not.
Still, the card symbols are much better done on PC than the Aquarius. The "club" never looked like a club to me. And, to make matters worse, the Aquarius doesn't have a spade. I guess they though developers could use the plane.
The PCs extended ASCII art has much better lines. The PC's extended-ASCII version of Pac-Man is far superior than anything the Aquarius can pull off. But, the PC could hardly get as good TRON: Deadly Discs.
But back on subject.
When you say ASCII art, people think this: http://www.asciimation.co.nz/
Most people don't know computer tech at all - that I realize. They don't know a byte from a nibble - nor the use of "hacker" vs. "cracker".
Edited by Devin, Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:30 PM.